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Old May 29, 2006, 4:24 PM   #1
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Join Date: May 2006
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Hi folks, this is my first post. I just received my 7D with 28-75 2.8 from Adorama (great deal at $900), and Tamron 28-300 walkaround ($150 at Cord). Thank you for your excellent posts, especially JimC. Years ago I was an avid amateur, 7xi, 50 1.7, 28-80 and 100-300 xi zooms. I'm looking forward to the digital learning experience.

I'm a former scientist so I decided to do a semi-scientific comparison of Minolta v Canon v Nikon lenses. I don't know if all this info has been posted before, but I'll give you my novice opinion and you can let me know if I'm way off. I choose the following lenses because I own them or want them, so this is not comprehensive. I compared similar lenses at Photodo, using identical or similar focal lengths and specs. I looked for the most recent new prices, and I realize some Minoltas my not be available (but Sony should be similar in quality and price). If available, I used IS/anti-shake lenses for Canon and Nikon. Remember, I couldn't always compare apples to apples, I got as close as I could (such as the Nikon 60 macro v Minolta 50).

In almost all available comparisons the quality of the lenses, using the overall grade, were extremely close (within 10%). Let me repeat that, assuming Photodo does a good job with a good lens, the quality grades were all very close. No one company is clearly superior. However, the prices often varied more than 10% between lowest and highest. So, I picked out the best and worst "value" in each lens class. The results, best value listed first, worst value listed second (Canon=C, Minolta=M, Nikon=N):

50 1.7 M and C N (Nikon 37% more)

85 1.4 CN (Canon 85 1.8 great value, Nikon 300% more!)

50 2.8 macro C N (Minolta was close, Nikon 65% more)

100 2.8 macro C N (Again, Minolta was close, Nikon 76% more)

17-35 D + G M C (Canon 51% more)

Not a very clean comparison - D type prices with G type tests - due to lack of info.

28-75 G M N (no D type test info, Nikon 36% more))

70-200 G equal equal

So, here's what I learned: Nikon is way overpriced, overall Minolta is the best value, there are plenty of lens choices at all lengths for anyone but the most demanding pro, Minolta/Sony could use a good 17-55, Minolta seems to have more lower price value lenses such as the 28-75 D and the used beercan, only Minolta has the 500 8.0 a unique value.

Remember, all my opinions are uninformed, I'm a newbie. Mostly, I'm trying to post info for others like me who are trying to decide whether to stick with Minolta. I realize I'm preaching to the choir on this forum, but let me know what you think. Also, is there an accurate website for all or most used lens prices so I can do a similar comparison.

I'm off to our local military cemetery for a remembrance ceremony and some shots.
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Old May 29, 2006, 8:24 PM   #2
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Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 143

My Minolta 5D is my first SLR of any kind ever as photography is a fairly new hobby for me. One of the reasons I chose Minolta over Canon or Nikon was it seemed that the glass was cheaper (but not of less quality). I have two great oldlenses and between them both didn't even pay $250 (the beercan and the old 28-135) and both are in very good condition. And both lenses were purchased in a camera store within the last 5 months! To get that kind of optical quality in either C or N would have cost much more unless you stumble upon an amazing Ebay deal or find one in a pawn shop. Add Anti Shake to those lenses and it's an incredible bang-for-the-buck that you can't touch with any other brand.
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